Truckin', Sugaree, Mr. Charlie, Beat It On Down The Line, Tennessee Jed, Jack Straw, Run Rudolph Run, You Win Again, Me And Bobby McGee, Comes A Time, El Paso, Smokestack Lightnin', Cumberland Blues, One More Saturday Night
Ramble On Rose, Me & My Uncle > The Other One > Mexicalli Blues > The Other One > Wharf Rat, Casey Jones, ENCORE: Johnny B Goode
first time played: Run Rudolph Run
Other artist(s): NRPS
Collection GratefulDeadBand/Artist Grateful DeadVenue Felt Forum, Madison Square GardenLocation New York, NYSource SBD -> Master Reel -> Apogee AD500 -> DatLineage Dat (Sony R500) -> Sound Devices 744T -> Samplitude Professional v11.03 -> FLACTransferred by Charlie Miller
March 23, 2012
This is the first of a four-night run at the Felt Forum, a 3,500 seat theater attached to NYC's Madison Square Garden. It was the very next night, a Sunday, when, in my opinion, the band reached their peak.
In September of '71 I was a 14-year-old junior NYC Dead-head in the 10th grade who had just heard about the December shows. I decided I was going. An older classmate said, "Cool. Where're you sitting?" I told him I hadn't yet bought my ticket, and he told me that the shows were sold out.
And so it was that I found myself sitting in my room, tuned in to WNEW (102.7FM) and Scott Muni on Sunday, December 5th, my four blank 90-minute cassettes at the ready.
It's obvious that the Dead put extra effort into the Sunday, December 5th show, knowing that it was being simulcast over the radio. It is longer than the other three shows. As Jerry says at the end, "Be sure and listen tomorrow night on the radio."
The New Riders, with Jerry playing pedal steel, played for about 90 minutes. Then we were treated to Bill Graham telling about how he had just tackled a ticket thief outside, as well as snippets from the soon-to-be released "Garcia" album.
The Dead took the stage and played the definitive versions of the new material that would be released eleven months later as "Europe '72". This is the Dead with Ron on organ, Phil singing full-time, and new member Keith playing a real piano (as opposed to the 'electric piano' sound that so bothered me in coming years). I played those cassttes 'till they wore out.
When I finally saw them 15 months later at the Nassau Coliseum, it was something of a letdown. Ron had just died, and the Coliseum was hardly an intimate setting. I was surprised to see that Bob, not Jerry, was the 'frontman'.
As I said before, I consider December 5, 1971 their peak. Of course, for full acid-drenched intensity, it's hard to touch September 29, 1969.